It’s the first post-Brendan Mailbox. The common consensus is that the sacking was right but we’ll miss him. One mailer thinks it was a bad decision. We also have plenty on Arsenal and Man United…
If you fancy contributing to the Mailbox, you ought to mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Alas poor Brendan, I knew him, he was outstanding.
The right decision (but we’ll miss him)…
Well you can’t really say it was unfair I think. 1 win in 10 games is just not acceptable at any club hoping to finish in the top 10.
Rodgers’ teams have been guilty of giving up leads too easily, not defending well and often not being set up well to compete. Putting the 13/14 season aside, because the front six picked itself every week, those are issues which have never been solved or improved whilst he’s been manager.
The transfer record is pretty abysmal and the performance against the top 4 rivals is also not good enough. Liverpool are probably the fifth best team in England but that doesn’t mean every game against a better team should end in defeat, and they certainly shouldn’t be quite the one sided affairs they too often have been.
Even little things grated; the need to fit a privacy wall because team selections kept leaking out. Funny that Rafa never had this issue, but then if you insist of playing 11 vs 11 and the starting 11 always play together and wear the orange bibs every week is it really a shock? Why did he often speak about the planned approach for a game days before? I accept it was mostly sound bites that mean little but you often don’t know what you accidentally reveal when you speak and at times I think he was just a bit too naive.
Why did players Lovren, Lallana and Balotelli get endless chances to establish themselves whilst Sakho, Markovic and Borini were ignored for so long? Borini isn’t a great striker but he would’ve been more effective than the statue we too often played last season.
Rodgers is a great coach, I think he is is definitely capable of improving players and he will obviously get another decent crack at management which I am sure he will take and perform well in. His management of young players is also amazing and Sterling, Ibe and a few others have really kicked on under his guidance. Sadly I think his time at Liverpool had come to a natural end where he didn’t seem to be finding enough progress anymore. The key now has to be that Liverpool appoint a top manager, not another riskier option. If they don’t hire Klopp or Ancelotti then in fact better the devil you know and we paid £7m in compensation for no good reason.
Well that had an air of inevitability to it. I wonder if he would have kept the job by winning at Everton? I’m inclined to think not. It all seemed very strategic what with the international break. Better that it happened now rather than later in the season when nothing at all can be salvaged.
It’s hard to say I feel sorry for such an inflated bag of self-congratulations, but Liverpool is not an easy club to manage. Trying to balance the reality of not being financially competitive at the very top with the expectations of fans who don’t want to know about such inconvenient truths must be very difficult. Having said all that, some of his signings have been atrocious and his tactics have at times been brainless. It’s a results game and he didn’t get the results. Not a tough equation.
If Klopp or Carlo does come in, I hope whichever one it is has the good sense to demand 100% control over the transfer policy. Enough of this ‘by committee’ nonsense. As for Rodgers, he’ll catch on with a foreign team somewhere and be fine. Could totally imagine him and is teeth sipping cocktails at a hotel bar in southern Spain. He could even get a part-time gig during the week as a bingo caller at one of the resorts.
Eamonn Quinn (Turns out this wasn’t our year after all), Istanbul.
I suppose it was becoming inevitable, what was once a clear vision of possession football and a direction for the team, became ‘give it to the really good lad’, became..well, I’m not sure but it probably should’ve involved a bit more defending.
I’ll miss Box Office Brendan, the league will be a much duller place without him. He got his big job, and so nearly won the title. With Liverpool. No one wins the title with Liverpool anymore, it would have been incredible, even if you are one of those people who churlishly put the whole season down to Suarez.
Interesting to see where Brendan goes from here. Will his massive confidence crash now? Personally, I’d guess not. Expect he sat at home last night feeling sorry for the Liverpool board for their mistake, drinking a decent red and listening to Big Yellow Taxi on repeat.
It’s one hell of a busy morning for the staff today I would imagine so I hope you’ve had your coffee!
Naturally my contribution will be for the headline news but wanted to make a quick nod to the brilliance of Sergio Aguero, a sublime performance by Arsenal at the Emirates this weekend and the least surprising news that Advocaat has left Sunderland.
As a lifelong Liverpool fan it’s sad to see a manager sacked, we don’t really pull the tigger but usher the manager out the back door. This however needed to be done, 20 points from the last 17 league games isn’t good enough in this league, the writing was already on the wall. I can only assume that the board have acted given the availability of other coaches that weren’t interested/available in the summer.
I liked Brendan (aside from his big gob) and felt he was a manager that could come good. This parting of ways kind of feels like breaking up with a girl you really like and could see a future with but no matter how hard you tried it just wasn’t going to work, yet you still feel a tinge of regret at the outcome
The manager job at Liverpool is a poisoned chalice so whoever takes the reins will find the going very tough and I hope that fans aren’t deluded (most Liverpool fans are according to the rest of the league) to think that a new manager will change our fortunes within a short space of time. There isn’t a manager in the world that can turn water into wine that quickly – just look at the 1st team and squad, that should give you all the indicators you need to see how far we need to climb.
Amit (prefer the exciting Klopp over the calm assurance of Ancelotti but would take either in a heartbeat), London
I think I’ve done well to not mail about certain things during the tenure of Brendan, but now he has been sacked, can any Liverpool supporter/fan think of one game, just one game, where you thought, “this is the man to take us forward”, I’m struggling.
Ben, the Bournemouth Red
“I don’t feel any pressure, I can honestly say that. I have never felt anything other than secure. That is not being complacent. I was brought here to do a job, I signed a new deal and the owners know it takes time.”
Even an hour before his sacking he knew exactly the wrong thing to say.
Oh Brendan, we will miss you and your press conferences.
thank you for the madness of 13/14
see you later for the madness of 14/15
Tyla (ultimately it was too much too soon, Klopp for the Kop please) Roxburgh, Merseyside
The wrong decision…
Sure you will get plenty of these going both ways, but I find myself almost physically angry at the sacking of Brendan Rodgers. This is a manager that nearly delivered the title 2 seasons ago, lost arguably the 2 of the best players the league has ever seen in Gerrard and Suarez, had to cope with Daniel (injured again) Sturridge and is managing a team with almost jaw droppingly self-entitled fans in the game. Liverpool are currently 4 points better off than Chelsea in a bonkers season where everyone is losing left right and centre. For god sake, Arsenal just beat United. Doesn’t that tell you how strange this season has been???
I doubt Chelsea will sack Mourinho because of the bad run. And mark my words, they will challenge for the title this year and next. Liverpool can expect nothing for years again now.
Stupid, stupid move.
Stu AFC (not even a Liverpool fan but seriously. Awful decision.)
On the fence…
In amongst Rodgers’ departure, I already see several people saying how his success was only down to Suarez/Sturridge/perfect storm/nuclear fusion or whatever. Fact is, the manager is accountable at the top. And thus he should be given credit for when it went right, and flack when it goes wrong.
I for one think Liverpool has sacked a good manager. One who is still learning, and I’m sure will appear in a top job sooner or later. Thanks for the memories.
On another note, how bloody good were Saints?!
Laudrup for ‘Pool?
I wrote some time ago about Michael Laudrup taking the helm at Liverpool.
Despite the lack of wins, Liverpool are still sitting surprisingly well in the right half of the table. Our style, implemented by Rodgers is a passing game. And when executed is beautiful. Do we dispose of this as we did of the manager. No, three years of work down the drain. We embrace and enhance. Do we go for Ancellotti, Klopp or Mourinho(assuming his availability)? No. Why throw good money after bad. Each will demand £4-6 mill a season.
Enter Laudrup. His managerial style matches the way he played. He is the perfect person to build on what Rodgers has laid and at a fraction of the cost.
Dealt a horrible blow by Swansea, he would surely relish the chance for a return to the Premier League, even as an interim.
For anyone wondering about that almighty thump you just heard, I’m pretty sure it was an elephant falling out of a tree.
No-one’s quite sure where that blind meerkat got hold of a rifle though.
Arsenal vs. United conclusions
1) Firstly well done, Arsenal. Their goals were very, very good goals and they completely bossed us in the first 20 mins and after that, they didn’t have to do anything. That said, we were terrible, and it was so frustrating to watch how in the first 10 minutes we kicked everything long, surrendering possession to a team that keeps the ball very well. And we were punished accordingly, but for all the praise that Arsenal will receive, their attacking play should have been that good – let me qualify that. Arsenal have one of the best teams in England, full of technically gifted players, if they can’t pass accurately and score against little to no pressure then they shouldn’t be in the Premier League.
2) this brings me nicely onto my second point, and it’s something that Louis Van Gaal (to his credit) noticed and brought up in the interview and given our improved display in the second half (against an understandably quiet Arsenal) must have mentioned at half time. Manchester United looked as if they couldn’t be bothered to be there. There was no desire, no fight, no edge. I expected a reaction from Arsenal with a point to prove but I didn’t expect this. Arsenal wanted it more that we did, and it showed. This was typified by Basti being beaten to a pass straight to him by Walcott.
3) Watching Schweinsteiger harrying the Arsenal defence when Rooney camped on the half way line was infuriating. Rooney should have been tasked to do that, since he was on the pitch…
4) It is clear Rooney is only starting because he is captain. He had an almost lively second half performance but it is clear he offers little to anyone in the team, certainly not more that Mata would offer in that position, or Herrera.
5) Darmian had a rotter, but to be fair, he didn’t get the support necessary, and being found wanting against one of the world’s best is no disgrace. Sanchez is a player at the top of his game.
6) Matial however, looked exciting and dangerous. And his control and turn to force the Cech save before half time was exquisite.
7) Cech was actually probably the busier of the keepers. De Gea was beaten more times obviously but De Gea had very little to do an I don’t blame him for any of the goals. Maybe he could have done better on thte first gaol but i’m no professional.
8) Good to see Wilson get a runabout.
United Twice, City, Chelsea, Liverpool, Spurs all beaten in the last 9 months.
Maybe Wengers not so hopeless/tactically inept after all.
I personally think the players need to take more responsibility for defeats like Monaco/Olyimpiakos. They clearly have the ability
Scott (Happy Gooner)
It was like ’04 all over again
Well that was quite something. Arsenal playing like the Arsenal of 2004 rather than the Arsenal of the past decade. Yes, there were moments when we still defended like buffoons but overall we shut Man U down and left Martial (and his admittedly scary talent) frustrated.
Sanchez scored his 5th and 6th goals of the week, Walcott played football like a footballer(!), Mertesacker (one excruciatingly slow attempted clearance aside) didn’t look like the tortoise the non-Arsenal fans see him as, Coquelin did his thing, Ozil was sublime again, Ox continues to look almost impress, Bellerin was awesome… Very satisfying.
Best of all was the referee, kudos to Anthony Taylor, for issuing cards where appropriate and not letting the match get out of hand. Mike Dean take note. You can actually officiate a match without being a douche.
I still felt nervous on 80 minutes when we hadn’t got a fourth goal. Something only Arsenal fans can empathise with.
Alay (how was your weekend Diego? Mine was good), N15 Gooner
How long before people notice Schweinsteiger is as much of a drain on United as Rooney? Slow, laboured, unable to contribute creatively or defensively.
A waste of time, a waste of money, a waste of a team place, as I’ve said since he was first mooted as a signing.
Couple him with Rooney and United are playing with 9 men. Arsenal only had to play well for 15 minutes to be out of sight.
Hate to say I told you s.. no, wait. I love being proved right.
Van Gaal out
0. Van Gaal OUT
1. This was not a one-off performance. Last year against Arsenal was the same. as was the case against Liverpool. We just got lucky and the result simply has masked the performance over the course of a year. We have struggled against fast, pacy, passing teams.
2. Our football is dour, dimwitted, boring, and slow. Even in the second half when we were supposedly chasing a 3-0 deficit, we seemed to show no urgency, instead prioritizing possession over incision, passing over creating.
3. We changed our formation from a seemingly working (Fellaini dependent) 433 to a 4231 that is just too defensive especially when the 2 is Carrick and Schweinsteiger. We have gotten by for far too long by virtue of us having better individuals and superlative goalkeeping performances. It was time we paid for it.
4. Just like we mustn’t forget the fortuitous wins over Arsenal, Pool etc last season, we must also not forget the fact that Van Gaal stumbled upon his good formation due to a lack of players rather than by deliberate intent. He just got lucky there
5. Our transfers have been good in some senses – Martial, Blind, Schneiderlin, Schweinsteiger, Shaw, Herrera all seem to be good signings although giving credit to Van Gaal for the last two is pushing it a bit. Also, we have successfully dodged a few bad transfers (Cesc, Pedro?, Otamendi?, etc.). BUT
6. Given the rate at which Darmian picks up yellows, I wonder why Rafael should have been booted out, that too when compared to Valencia. Is Depay any better than Nani would have been? Why sell Van Persie when Rooney is pure sh*t for more than a year now? Why buy an average defender with no stand-out attributes (Rojo)? The Di Maria deal? The Valdes mishandling? Why have we spent 200 Million and still have wingers covering for full-backs? Why, after stressing that pace and creativity are important, do we play Rooney and not anyone even remotely better than him?
7. Why did we have Phil Jones taking corners? Why do we still rely on booting it up to Fellaini when we want to score? Why is Rooney still playing? Why is Herrera not playing? Why did we send out all our strikers when we had only Rooney, Martial and Wilson? A thousand such absolutely bizzare and inexplicable things.
8. The biggest problem of them all is that Van Gaal will not change even one bit of his tactics or formation or selection. In a bizzare bipolar contradiction, he is a manager who thinks retaining the ball well equates to playing well and yet has a Mourinho-esque pragmatism in saying we need to score just one more than the opponent. He is someone who keeps referring to the Hull( !!! HULL !!!) game last year as a great performance. Someone who believes that if we had beaten Chelsea last time we would have won the title. Someone who believes that our performance against Newcastle this year was good. Someone who lives in his own grand delusion of a philosophy.
For all these reasons and much much more, Van Gaal OUT
Bala (Yesterday was a 8-2 in reverse) MUFC
Top, top, top manager
Advocaat leaves Sunderland in quite the sticky situation: 8 games, 3 points.
If only there were someone we could think of who’s performed a similar kind of rescue act…
(Cue the sound of a brass band starting the “Great Escape” theme tune as Jamie gets “proper, proper excited”)
Mike (parenthetically challenged), CCFC, Cork